Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Coptic Stone Icon

In Portland this past fall I found this wonderful little Coptic carved stone icon. The recesses for the doors are about 3/8 inch deep. This is one side, the doors open, see below. I think this would make a fantastic book structure. I do plan to copy the format at some point.

Some artist friends came to visit this weekend. There was a lot of talk about where inspiration comes from. One of them is just beginning to make art and keeps saying she's not creative. (I intend to erase that idea from her head.) Every artist develops his/her sources of inspiration. For me it often comes from outsider art, folk art and art before the renaissance. (I don't like the whole "high art/low art" debate that went around when I was in school, but I'm not going to try to address any of it.) It's good to look at lots of art and draw your inspiration from the things you are most passionate about. I bought this icon because it spoke to me so clearly. It has charm, a primitive energy and a sincere purpose.

The doors are attached with a heavy cord. The stone is carved. You can see that the door on the right has broken and been clumsily mended. Too bad, but it made the price lower - that was good for me.

This is the other side. Same basic format. The door on the left appears to be a slightly different stone, perhaps made to replace a broken one?

And the second side, open.

There are larger photos on flickr.


Anonymous said...

I love it!


ArtPropelled said...

This is so beautiful. I am itching to hold it! I collect Ethiopian artefacts including icons. I don't think I have ever seen one in stone. It is absolutely breathtaking.